Ranji Trophy: Sanju to lead Kerala, Vishnu Vinod dropped

Vishnu Vinod
The selectors have overlooked Vishnu Vinod. File photo: KCA

Sanju Samson will lead Kerala in the Ranji Trophy this season, while all-rounder Sijomon Joseph has been named his deputy.

The 17-member squad picked for the first two matches against Jharkhand and Rajasthan does not feature aggressive wicketkeeper-batter Vishnu Vinod. Newcomer Sachin Suresh is the second stumper.

All-rounder Shoun Roger, batter Krishna Prasad and off-spinner Vaiskah Chandran are the other newcomers.

In a surprising move, the selectors have recalled veteran middle order batter Rohan Prem.

Left-handed opener P Rahul has been picked subject to fitness. Seasoned all-rounder Jalaj Saxena is the lone outstation professional. 

Kerala open their Elite Group C campaign against Jharkhand at Ranchi on December 13 (Tuesday).

The second match against Rajasthan too is an away tie and will begin on December 20.

Chhattisgarh, Goa, Services, Karnataka and Pondicherry are the other teams in the group.

Kerala will play their home matches at the St Xavier's College Ground, Thumba, Thiruvananthapuram.

Kerala squad: Sanju Samson (capt &wk), Sijomon Joseph (vice-capt), Rohan Kunnummal, Krishna Prasad, Vathsal Govind, Rohan Prem, Sachin Baby, Shoun Roger, Akshay Chandra, Jalaj Saxena, Basil Thampi, M D Nidheesh, Fanoos F, Basil N P, Vaisakh Chandran, Sachin Suresh (wk), P Rahul (subject to fitness).

The fixtures: Jharkhand versus Kerala, December 13 to 16.

Rajasthan versus Kerala, December 20 to 23.

Kerala vs Chhattisgarh, December 27 to 30.

Kerala vs Goa, January 3 to 6.

Kerala vs Services, January10 to 13.

Kerala vs Karnataka, January 17 to 20.

Pondicherry vs Kerala, January 24 to 27.

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